Day 350 Dec 15, 2019
PROTECTION by KC Grifant
Frozen Wavelets – 2019
Horror – 1 Page
Microfiction is a tough one. This one didn’t have a huge punch to round out the preceding words, but it did have some punch. Good imagery.
Day 351 Dec 16, 2019
GOOD HAIR by Marta Balcewicz
Tiny Crimes – 2018
Crime – 5 Pages
Fantastic. This one has a great setup. Immediately you feel for the vulnerability of the lead and everything from there is smooth sailing as far as being immersed in the story. Things quickly spiral into a great kind of weird. Good writing. Fun idea. Solid start to finish.
Day 352 Dec 17, 2019
SHOOFLY by Richard Matheson
The Incredible Shrinking Man - 1994 (story originally published in The Twilight Zone Magazine, 1983)
General – 16 Pages
Strange story to end this collection on. A guy is flipping over a fly that comes to represent himself, making his actions self-destructive. It’s mostly fun, but pretty much middle of the road, especially for Matheson. Great setup though, make a story pretty relatable: office guy popping pills, has a sore back, has stomach problems, smokes until it hurts, paperwork stress, family stress.
Day 353 Dec 18, 2019
THE CROOKED PICTURE by John Lutz
Tricks and Treats – 1976, 2019 (story originally published in Man From UNCLE Mystery Magazine, 1967)
Mystery – 7 Pages
A closed-door mystery revolving around the often-occurring too revealing photograph of a rich lady, taken during her wily youth. Fun thing about this one, the answer’s solved without much consideration of the actual case. A man is brought in and tells a story and in doing so, explains the answer he assumes to be the solution. It has a medium heat kind of vibe, engaging and entertaining, but didn’t have a great deal of bang to the reveal, nor did it explain everything.
Day 354 Dec 19, 2019
CRONES IN THEIR LARVAL STATE by Hailey Piper
The Arcanist – 2019
Fantasy – 3 Pages (about, digital)
I suppose the intent was a social justice story that tugged at the heartstrings. Didn’t do much for me, the characters were fully neat and simply boxed. There’s not much by way of atmosphere or description. The themes are pretty predictable and trodden too often. The naïve, out-of-touch mother always feels like someone’s looking for a reason to justify a type of person’s potential for bigotry. Like they didn’t know or were from another time. Blah blah. Overall, not much to this one.
Day 355 Dec 20, 2019
THE WRONG ONE by Erica Wright
Tiny Crimes – 2018
Crime – 2 Pages
This is a grim little tale built on atmosphere and characterization rather than much by way of story. The build produces an immersive situation. Pretty good.
Day 356 Dec 21, 2019
WHERE THE SALMON RUN by Ray Cluley
Probably Monsters – 2015
General – 22 Pages
This one’s long and slow, and kind of obvious in what’s going to happen, though when it happened, it came with no texture or real description. I’ve read a bunch of stories by this author that I’ve liked, but I’m thinking most of them came after this collection. Twenty pages of build-up to one page of hinted suspense and then one with the thing that I assumed would happen. Did remind me of the time I was visiting at a trailer park and some other kids showed me a big mother fish that had died that day, burst open with her eggs poured out of her where she lay on sandy ledge.